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College of Education

Special Education, M.Ed.

Masters of Education in Special Education Degree

The Clemson Master of Education in Special Education is a 100% online graduate program for educators interested in enhancing the field of Special Education. Students take coursework in Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) in academics and behavior. The rich, engaging curriculum will prepare you to advance your professional standing in just 24 months.

M.Ed. Special Ed Brochure M.Ed. Special Ed Handbook

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  • Overview

    Clemson University has combined the educational excellence that we are known for with the flexibility that many teachers desire and need. The result is a completely online Master of Education Degree in Special Education. This program is open to educators who work in formal educational settings. Consistent access to students is critical to your success in the program since many courses require assignments working with children or adolescents. We will consider some informal educational settings (e.g., clinics), but suggest contacting the program coordinator prior to applying.

    Benefits of earning a M.Ed. in Special Education from Clemson University:

    • Earn a degree from a top 30 public university while anywhere in the world.
    • Experience educational excellence that Clemson University is known for at very competitive tuition rates.
    • Earn a significant pay raise in most states.
    • Increase your career options: continue as a classroom teacher or become a MTSS coordinator, behavior specialist, special education coordinator.
    • Join a community of practitioners from across the globe as you work to improve Special Education.
  • Admission Requirements

    Admission to the Program
    The Special Education M.Ed. program admits students for a Fall entrance term. Only complete applications are considered for admission.

    Application Deadlines 

    • January 15: Application Priority Deadline. Special Education faculty plan to review all complete applications submitted by this date.
    • April 15: Application Deadline

    Application Requirements

    • Currently be working in a formal or informal education setting
    • Earned a bachelor’s degree or higher in a field of education (e.g., special education, elementary or secondary education, reading education) or an education-related field (e.g., school psychology, occupational therapy, speech and language, behavior analysis)
    • Submit a Graduate School application which requires:
      • Unofficial transcripts (Official transcripts will be required if you are accepted into the program.)
      • GRE or MAT scores (The test score requirement will be waived if you received a 3.0 GPA or higher in last degree earned)
      • A current résumé
      • Three letters of recommendation (At least two letters must focus on your teaching and/or education-related experience)
      • A personal statement
        • Statement should address your desire to pursue the M.Ed. in Special Education and how you plan to use this degree to enhance the field
        • Approximate length is one page.
      • Official TOEFL/IELTS scores for international students

    Additional information concerning supporting materials can be found here

    Test Requirements (only required if a 3.0 GPA or higher was not obtained in last degree earned)
    Official test results are required. Scores are considered official only when they are sent directly to the Office of Admissions from the testing agency. Scores older than five years are considered expired.

    GRE Revised General Test Miller Analogies Test

  • Program Requirements

    The M.Ed. in Special Education is an entirely online degree. Students must maintain a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher in their coursework.

    M.Ed. in Special Education:
    The M.Ed. in Special Education is a 24-month program spanning six semesters. Fall and spring courses last seven and a half weeks each, allowing students to focus on one course at a time. Likewise, summer courses are also taught one at a time but in a five-week timeframe.

    Special Note
    The M.Ed. in Special Education does not lead to teaching licensure in South Carolina.

    Transfer Credits
    Transfer credits from other institutions are not accepted for this degree program.

    South Carolina is a member of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) and Clemson University (CU) is an approved SARA institution, which means we adhere to established standards for offering post-secondary e-learning programs in all member states. Please review our state authorizations to see if this program is offered in your state and our process for student complaints against the university.

  • ABAI Approved Course Sequence

    Association for Behavior Analysis International logoThe Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) has verified the following courses toward the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® or Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst® examination. Applicants will need to meet additional requirements before they can be deemed eligible to take the examination.

    EDSP 8540 – Applied Behavior Analysis
    EDSP 8710 – Ethical and Legal Considerations in Applied Behavior Analysis
    EDSP 8720 – Advanced Classroom Management
    EDSP 8730 – Experimental Analysis of Behavior
    EDSP 8740 – Single-Case Research Design
    EDSP 8750 – Advanced Single-Case Research Methodology
    EDSP 8760 – Behavior Analytic Supervision

    All courses are taught by full-time Clemson University special education faculty.

    Our Verified Course Sequence (VCS) number is 51288, and a link to the Course Sequence Information can be found here

    Please direct questions about the VCS and how it can fit into the M.Ed. in Special Education program of study to the program faculty:
    ABAI VCS Coordinator: Dr. Shanna Hirsch (
    M.Ed. in Special Education Program Coordinator: Dr. Catherine Griffith (

  • Online Environment

    With the support of CU Online, Clemson uses the most advanced online technology to provide a rich, supportive, seamless learning environment. Courses will be asynchronous thus allowing students to access courses when and where they need. While students have great flexibility in asynchronous learning, there are key deadlines in each course when learning modules must be completed. Students will be provided with timely support from instructors and technology personnel so that learning is maximized. Canvas, a very user friendly learning management system, is used for all courses to guide the learning experiences. An orientation module will be provided before the start of the program to allow students to become comfortable with expectations and the technologies before classes formally start.

  • Financial Information

    The online M.Ed. programs at Clemson University are among the most economically priced.

    Tuition and Fees
    This program is an Online Tier 5. Explore information on tuition and fees using the Student Financial Services’ tuition and fee calculator. (Be sure to choose the ‘Go to Online’ tab at the top of the page.)

    S.C. Teacher Incentive
    The Special Education M.Ed. offers a South Carolina Teacher Incentive reducing tuition by 10% for all in-state SC K-12 teachers/leaders.

    Financial Aid
    For information regarding financial aid, please contact the Office of Student Financial Aid.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    What is the Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) examination pass rate for the Clemson University, College of Education program (Verified Course Sequence 51288)?
    The Clemson College of Education’s M.Ed. in Special Education now offers students an Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) - Verified Course Sequence (VCS). This is a VCS within the College of Education. The BACB does not report data for VCS in their first four years of operation.

    Who teaches Clemson University, College of Education M.Ed. in Special Education courses?
    Our courses are taught by full-time Clemson faculty members in Special Education, including Shanna Hirsch, PhD, BCBA-D (ABAI VCS Coordinator), Catherine Griffith, PhD (MEd Program Coordinator), Abigail Allen, PhD, Antonis Katsiyannis, EdD, Wendell Parker, PhD, Joseph Ryan, PhD, and Pamela Stecker, PhD

    Can I work full- or part-time while completing the program? 
    Yes. We encourage individuals to work in an education setting while completing the program to gain experience implementing strategies and interventions discussed in the courses.

    Does this program include supervised field experiences?
    No. You will not have supervised field experiences. However, you will have course assignments that will require you to have access to students.

    Do I need to be online for class at a certain time?
    No. All coursework is asynchronous. You will have established deadlines within each course but will not have required live sessions. However, faculty will be available to assist and support students.

  • Virtual Information Sessions & Calendar

    Review our College of Education Graduate Calendar to view upcoming events and information sessions.

  • Find Out More

    For more information about this program, please contact Alison Search at or Dr. Catherine Griffith at

Department of Education and Human Development
Department of Education and Human Development | 209 Gantt Circle